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JANUARY, 1946 


P^S 5HZ-:2o 









Town Planning Consultants 

St. Louis, Missouri 

29th June, 1945 

Price: $0.25 


Mayor, J. W. Cor next 


John Bennett George Buscombe H. L. Corey W. D. Greyell 

Charles Jones George C. Miller Jack Price Charles E. Thompson 

City Officials 

City Engineer Charles E. Brakenridge, m.e.i.c. 

City Comptroller Frank Jones 

Corporation Counsel D. E. McTaggart, b.a., k.c. 

City Clerk Ronald Thompson 

City Solicitor A. E. Lord, b.a. 

Medical Health Officer S. Stewart Murray'', m.d., d.p.h. 

Building Inspector Andrew Haggart 




Charles T. Hamilton, b. a. sc, m.e.i.c, Chairman 

H. V. Jackson, Vice-Chairmaii 

Earl M. Bennett Frank E. Buck, b.s.a. J. C. McPherson 

Joseph Briggs F. N. Hamilton W. R. Owen 

J. S. Porter, m.r.a.i.c. 

Ex-Officio Members 
Alderman H. L. Corey Representing Vancouver City Council 

E. A. Cleveland, ll.d., m.e.i.c Chairman, Vancouver and Districts Joint 

Sewerage and Drainage Board. 

Don C. Brown ...Representing Board of Park Commissioners 

Elmore Meredith, b.a Representing Board of School Trustees 

F. W. G. Sergant Representing Vancouver Port Authority 


J. Alexander Walker,, c.e., m.e.i.c, Executive Engineer 

F. Marjorie Ross, Secretary 


Harland Bartholomew and Associates 
Harland Bartholomew Russell H. Riley 

Eldridge H. Lovelace 

Resident Engineer 
J. Alexander Walker,, c.e., m.e.i.c. 

Staff, J'ancouvcr 
Elliot A. Schmidt, John H. F. Eassie 



W. Dalton, Chairman R. M. Edgar John Elliott, b.c.l.s. 

Albert J. Harrison, Secretary 


City Planners — Civil Enginkeks — Landscape Architects 

3 1 7 North Eleventh Street 
Saint Louis i, Missouri 

September, 1945. 

Town Planning Commission, 
Vancouver, British Columbia. 

Gentlemen : 

In accordance with our agreement, we are pleased to submit the 
following report upon Transit. This is one of the series of reports 
that will comprise your revised Town Plan. 

Transit facilities have a profound influence upon the distribution 
of population and the arrangement of the city. A transit plan such 
as tliat contained herein will be of great value in properly directing 
the growth of the city and in providing the maximum of conveniences 
and accessibility. Transit facilities are a particularly important 
influence in the maintenance of high values in the central business 

We wish to express our appreciation for the information 
furnished and the excellent co-operation extended by tlie British 
Columbia Electric Railway Company, particularly that given by 
Mr. E. W. Arnott, Vice-President in charge of Transportation. 

Respectfully submitted, 

Harland Bartholomew and Assoclates. 
Bv Harland Bartholomew. 




Increasing Need for Transit Facilities in I^rge Cities 7 

Facilities Influence Distribution of Population 8 

Objectives of This Report 8 


Type of Service 9 

Area of Service 9 

Alignment of Routes , 9 

Speed :; 10 

Headways 10 









Major Street Improvements 29 

Loading Lanes 29 

Fare Collectors 30 

Limited Stops : 30 



Plate 1. Lucatiox and Extent of Present Transit Routes 12 

Plate 2. Duplication of Service 13 

Plate 3. Passengers Carried and Seats Furnished 16 

Plate 4. Central Business District Routes 17 

Plate 5. Intermediate Transit Plan Facing page 19 

Plate 6. Ultimate Transit Plan Facing page 24 


Transit facilities have exerted a major influence upon the growth and devel- 
opment of \'ancouN"er. Without them the city could not have grown nearly as 
rapidly or as large as it now is. They will have an equal or even more important 
influence upon its growth in the future. 

The advent of the automobile produced a serious competitor of transit systems. 
Prior to the war the transit facilities showed more loss than gain in this compe- 
tition. For example, the number of passengers using the \"ancouver system had 
decreased from a total of 57,429,953 in 1929 to 53,554,514 in 1939. However, they 
were by no means supplanted by the automobile except in very small communities. 
The recent war has assisted in revealing their great value.* 


Even prior to the war there was a growing appreciation of the value of 
transit facilities, especially in the larger cities. The large number of motor cars 
so congested the streets that vehicular movement became slow and costly. The 
concentration of these automobiles within and near the business districts presented 
many difficult problems. There just was not enough street space to accommodate 
all the cars, the ofif-street parking facilities were inadequate, and many persons 
became discouraged with the time spent in searching for parking space and with 
the walking required between the parking space and their destination. This was 
one of the major causes for the trend toward decentralization in the central 
business district. 

It was also becoming apparent that it would be financially and physically 
impossible to widen or improve enough streets and to provide parking facilities 
within or near the central business area to accommodate all of the private motor cars 
in a large urban area. Thus the most logical alternative solution was to improve 
transit facilities which required far less street space in transporting large volumes 
of passengers. The provision of fast, comfortable vehicles leading directly from 
residential sections to places of employment, shopping and recreation is imperative. 

A recent trend in certain large cities also indicates the renewed interest in 
transit facilities. This is the planning of subways for transit routes in the most 
congested areas. Beyond the central area a few of the key routes are often pro- 
posed to be placed in subways or in ojien cuts, so that the vehicles can move 
rapidly and without interference. Toronto, Detroit. Cleveland and Washington are 
among the cities that have prepared plans for such improvements. The minimum 
size of the city, within which such expensive improvements could be economically 
justified, would vary according to many local conditions, but there is a definite trend 
toward substantial even though costly improvement of transit facilities. 

*Due to ivartiiiie conditions the number of passengers increased to 109,^81,216 in 1945. 


Prior to the advent of the automobile, transit facilities were the only important 
means of mass transportation in urban areas. Consequently, people lived close to 
transit routes and the urban areas were compact. The automobile greatly increased 
the distance that people could travel between their homes and places of employment 
or other destinations, and urban residences immediately scattered over a wide area. 
One of the major reasons for the compact development of cities no longer prevailed. 

This change in population pattern had a profound influence upon the transit 
facilities. They w'ere no longer the only source of riding and their revenue decreased. 
Furthermore, the population became so widely scattered that it was not practicable 
for them to extend their lines — especially street car lines — to keep pace with this 
new growth. The motor bus assisted in overcoming this diflFiculty, but in many 
instances the population was so thinly spread that the bus route was not economical 
because of the long distance travelled to serve a small number of riders. 


Because of \"ancouver's present size and its anticipated future growth, sub- 
stantial improvements will be necessary in the local transit facilities during the 
period covered by the revised Town Plan. This plan must thus provide a general 
guide for these improvements. It is primarily concerned with the location and 
extent of the routes. The business district and other major objectives of traffic 
must be properly served and the routes must be related to the desirable future pattern 
of population. The routes should also be located upon the major street system, 
since wide, direct and well paved streets are fundamental to an efficient transit 

The type of transit facilities and operating details are the primary concern of 
the operating company ratlier than tlie Town Plan. Many technological improve- 
ments are now being made in the types of transit facilities and. therefore, it is 
impossible to forecast just what type would be most efficient for each route. Tlic 
major problem is that the routes be properly located and that the operating compan>- 
attempt to provide the most modern, convenient and efficient type of vehicle. 


In designing- a comprehensive transit system for Vancouver, certain general 
principles and standards should be followed insofar as local conditions permit. 
These may be summarized briefly as follows: 


It is anticipated that X'ancouver will become a great metropolitan centre of 
population. However, because of the present and probable future low density of 
population, an extensive system of subw-ay or elevated transit routes would not 
prove economical. The major service must be provided by surface lines, but con- 
sideration should be given to utilizing express highways or improving private 
rights-of-way w-herever possible for modified forms of rapid transit to the central 
area. The surface lines should be served by modern and efficient types of vehicles. 

The type of vehicle or service will to a large extent depend upon the riding- 
habit along each route. On very heavily travelled lines, street cars are the most 
efficient type of carrier because of the many passengers they can accommodate. 
On the lighter travelled routes, the motor bus is usually the most efficient and 
economical. In many cities the trolley coach has given excellent service. 


The generally accepted maximum walking distance from the transit routes is 
one-quarter mile. However, there must be enough population within this distance 
of the line to pay for its operation, and in sparsely settled areas, a one-half mile 
walking- distance may be justified. In the main, transit service should be limited 
in residential sections to areas having, or which will ultimatel\- have, a density of 
ten or more persons per acre. 

The transit lines in the outer fringes of the citv will naturally converge near 
the downtown business district. As the population density increases toward the 
city centre, this convergence is desirable since the more frequent ser\ice \\ill 
encourage short distance travelling. 


The ideal transit routes should radiate from the downtown district to all 
residential areas. With the exception of Kingsway, \^ancouver has now no radial 
routes between the west, south and east major highways. Thus it is essential to 
concentrate lines upon the north and south streets leading to the business district 
and then extend them over the crosstown streets to provide direct service between 
residential sections and the shopping centre. This will also provide some crosstown 
service, but complete crosstown routes will probably be needed in the future. In 

order to reduce turning movements within the congested area, all routes should 
preferably pass through, rather than loop hack, in the central business area. With 
the majority of the routes passing through the downtown district, transferring 
from one route to another will be simplified. 


A fast schedule is economical for both riders and operators of a transit system. 
Fewer imits will efficiently serve an area if travelling on a fast rather than a slow 
schedule and there is the obvious advantage of saving the time of passengers. 
Faster service can result from the elimination of unnecessary turning movements 
and from straight, direct routing over wide streets. An excess number of stops 
for loading and discharging passengers also prevents speedy movement. The 
prohibition of parking at street car and bus stops can save many minutes and help 
to speed service. Tt will also assist in the prevention of downtown traffic conges- 
tion and of accidents. 

At busy intersections during rush hours, service is frequently speeded where 
fare collectors are stationed to assist the operators in selling tickets, making change, 
collecting tickets and issuing transfers. 


Fifteen-minute intervals between street cars and buses on the same line are 
generally regarded as the maximum desirable spacing for satisfactory services, 
although twenty-minute headways during non-rush hours and on Sundays and holi- 
days may suffice on some of the outlying street car lines and feeder bus lines. 
Longer intervals require a knowledge of schedules, and such service is generally 
acknowledged to be inadequate. Much more frequent service must be furnished on 
heavily travelled lines. In many districts the provision of more frequent service 
encourages additional passengers. Headways will naturall}' vary, according to the 
demands of different periods of the day and the riding habits of the various districts. 



Plate Number i shows the location and extent of tlie transit routes now serving 
the City of ^'ancouver. The service consists of interurl)an lines, street cars, and 
motor busses. Each of these are shown by a different indication on the plan. 

The three interurban lines extend beyond tlie present corporate limits and 
provide service to portions of the metropolitan area.. The majority of these rout- 
ings utilize private rights-of-way, although the Burnaby Lake and the Central Park 
lines also travel on city streets. The interurban lines are well located in relation 
to urban de^•elopment but none of them extend to the centre of the business district 
and most of the interurban passengers have to transfer to reach the central section. 

Street car lines provide by far the larger proportion of the local transit service. 
There are 62 miles of streets containing either single or double tracks while the 
bus routes are located on only 20 miles of streets. Thus, more than 75 per cent 
of local transit routes are street car operations and actually even a larger propor- 
tion of the total route mileage is represented by street cars since a number of lines 
travel over the same streets. For example, in 1944 the street cars operated a total 
of 14,305,889 miles while motor busses travelled only 1.511,055 miles. 

Most of the street car routes lead from the residential districts to the downtown 
area. However, a few. such as the southerly end of the ^lain and the Nanaimo 
lines, serve as feeder or shuttle services. The favourable location of the street car 
routes in relation to the population, and the fact that they provide direct service to 
the downtown area, are the reasons why they carry such a large proportion of the 
total riders. The majority of the transit routes are located on existing or proposed 
major streets, thus utilizing the wider and better improved pavement which is 
particularly important because of the fogs which occur during the winter months. 

Practically all of the bus routes are feeder lines providing service from the 
outlying residential districts to a street car line where the passengers then transfer 
to go downtow'n or to other destinations. The only exceptioii is the Cambie Street 
line and even this routing lias been changed from time to time during the war 

Nearly all of the street car lines extend through rather than loop in the central 
business district. The only exceptions are the Kitsilano, and the Powell and Oak 
Street car lines. In the central business area the street car routes utilize two north 
and south and two east and west streets. Granville Street is the most heavily 
travelled transit route in this area but the routing of lines over Richard Street has 
tended to avoid excessive congestion on the two north and south routes. The most 
heavily travelled transit route in the entire city is Alain Street immediately south 
of Hastings Street, but even here congestion has not become unduly excessive. 

Plate Number i also graphically shows areas within the corporate limits that 
are more than a quarter of a mile from a transit route, and dots indicate the popu- 
lation living in both the served and unserved areas. The greatest amount of 
unserved area lies in the southeast and in the southwest portions of the city, but 


in tliese areas there is a very small amount of population. Of the approxi- 
mately 28,000 acres within the city only 7.025 acres are more than one-quarter of a 
mile from a transit line, and of this area ahout 850 acres are occupied by parks, 
cemeteries and public uses. Thus only 22 per cent of the city's total area is now 
unserved and less than 20,000 persons or about 7.25 per cent of tiie 1941 population 
are beyond the quarter of a mile line. This is a surprisini^ly small unserved popu- 
lation in such a large area which is so thinly populated in many districts. Some of 
the routes, such as Oak Street, travel a long" distance, approximately from 33rd 
to 59th Avenues, while serving a very small number of persons. 

While the present transit system now serves a great percentage of the total 
population, extensions and improvements must be made in the future. Some of 
the lines must be made more direct, feeder service should be eliminated wherever 
possible, and rapid service should be gradually extended to encourage compact 
development in the outlying sections. 

Klv 10 ROUTES 


Plate Xnwbcr i 


Plate Xuniher J ;^ho\vs the duplication of transit service within the City of 
\'ancouver. Any area that is within a quarter of a mile <if two or more transit 
lines is considered to have duplicated service. However, wlien two lines operate 
upon the same street, it is considered as improved rather than duplicated service. 
An excessive amount of duplication is harmful to the over-all transit system in 
that it increases operating- cost and tends to prevent logical expansions and 
improvements. The accompanying plan shows areas, single-hatched that are within 
a quarter of a mile of two transit lines, and cross-hatched that are within a quarter 
of a mile of three or more transit lines. 

There is very little duplication of service in the entire city. Most of it i?. 
found within and near the central business district which is unavoidable and, in 



- c/V 











Plate Xuntbcr 3 

fact, is desirable, i Icrc the lines converge to enter a comparatively small area and 
must 'necessarily be close together. The other main source of duplication is found 
where transit lines cross each other in the outlying. sections and where the feeder 
bus lines join the main transit route. This is not an especially harmful situation 
although crossings should be avoided wherever possible. 

The two principal areas of duplicated service in the outlying sections, other 
than those above described, are between Fourth Avenue and Droadwa}-, west of 
Granville Street, and between Hastings and Powell Streets in the northeastern 
l)art of the city. While these two paralleling lines are too close together, their 
location is the result of topography and the location of major streets. It is not 
particularly serious and can be continued in the future. The plan clearly indicates 
no tendency for an excessive amount of service in any one area at the ex])ense 
of the entire citv. 



Plate Xuniber 3 grapliically shows the comparative volume of passengers 
carried and seats furnished for each line during' an average day in April. 1944. 
Similar data is shown for an average day in the corresponding month in 1939. 

The I 'late reveals two outstanding conditions: First, street cars ])erform a more 
important function than busses — they carried about 88 per cent of all the passengers 
during the average day in 1944 and 83 per cent of the passengers in 1939; second, the 
Plate indicates the substantial increase in the riding" habit that has occurred between 
I93() and 1944. Practically all lines now carry nearly twice as many passengers as 
they did in the earlier period and only one line, the Sixteenth Avenue route, 
has shown a loss rather than a large increase. This was due to the change in 
routing. Where this line now serves as a feeder it formerly extended directly to 
the business district. 

The Hastings Street lines and their various extensions and connections which 
include routes. Numbers 13. 14. 13 and 16, carried the largest number of riders — 
65,206 during an average day. TIk- Fraser Street routes. Numbers 6 and 7. are 
next with 40.132 passengers. Both lines travel well populated sections. 

In contrast with these heavily utilized street cars is the small number of 
passengers carried on the bus lines. Only one bus line, Canibie Street, carried 
more than 3,000 passengers during the average day. and one line, namely. Knight 
Street, carried less than i .000 passengers. The small number of passengers carried 
on the Sixteenth Avenue line clearly indicates the desire of passengers to utilize 
direct routes to the central area. 

Although the Hastings and Fraser Streets lines carried the largest number of 
passengers, they were not the most economical from the standpoint of the operat- 
ing company. On these lines there were only 6.8 and 3.8 revenue passengers per 
mile of operation, while on the Rob.son-Broadway, the Fairview and the Davie 
Street car lines, the number of revenue passengers per mile was 10.3, ().9 and 8.6, 
respectively. The Hastings and the Fraser Street lines travel long distances to 
carry their passengers, while the three latter lines travel a comparatively shorter 
distance and through some of the most heavily populated sections of the city. 

The number of passengers carried per mile of operation is obviously the most 
important means of determining or judging the economical efficiency of various 
routes. This in turn determines the total cost, gross income and the amount that 
would be available to improve and modernize service. They clearlv reveal that the 
compact and more intensively ])opulated sections are the most economical in which 
to operate transit facilities. They further indicate that if the city is to have a 
satisfactory transit system in the future, every effort must be made to keep a com- 
pact and economical population pattern rather than to permit it to scatter thinly 
over large areas. For example, the Oak Street line has the lowest revenue passen- 
gers per mile record of any street car line in the city entirely because it travels 
long distances through vacant or sparsely settled areas. It would be tinancially 
impractical to provide modern rapid transit service in the future for convenient 
access to all if the jxipulation is widelv scattered. 



Philc Xiiiiihcr J 


I'latc Xuniber 4 shows the locatiun i)t the cxistiiiL;- transit Hues in tiic central 
business district. In i;encral the location of the routes within this area is good. 
They are near the centre oi the district and thus the riders are brought to their 
desired destinations as conveniently as possible. A large number of the routes con- 
tinue through rather tha-n loop in the district, which is considered good transit 
routing practice. As previously indicated, it is desirable for vehicular traffic to 
approach the central business district on distributor streets such as Rurrard Street 
and the pro]iosed Canibie Street distributor, and for transit routes to enter the 
heart of the shopping centre. 

Granville Street contains the largest number of routes and operations. While 
this street is not unduly congested with transit facilities, it has about reached its 
normal capacity. In the future, routings should be located on parallel streets to 
avoid excessive congestion and delays along this important business street. The 
shape of the business district involves some left-hand turning movements even on 
through routes, but these are almost impossible to avoid. 

Another advantage of the present routings is that each route traverses a 
sub.stantial portion of the entire district. I'assengers can conveniently reach anv 





a. '^ - 



19 4 4 







Plate Xiniihcr 4 

desired downtown destination with a niininiuin amount of walking'. The larg-e 
number of routes ])assin.<i' through the n<irt1iern and older ])ortion of the centre is 
especially fortunate. 

The most serious objection to the present transit routes within the business 
district is that the interurban lines stop at the outskirts. Persons using these routes 
and desiring- to reach the centre of the shopping district must transfer to another 
transit line. As indicated later, the operation upon these interurban lines might be 
by street cars rather than interurbans so that the\- could continue to and through 
the business district. It would be neither economical nor desirable to rebuild the 
terminals nearer the centre of the district. 




Plate Number J 


riic transit system necessary to serve the future papulation of \ ancnuver will 
be gradually developed over a long period. Individual changes and re-routings will 
depend upon numerous factors, such as the location of new residential and indus- 
trial developments anil upon the opening and improvement of maior streets. The 
availability of new transit equipment will also influence tlie time within which the 
first changes can be initiated. Thus, it is impossible to now determine the exact 
sequence in which eacli step will be taken or the time each change will be made. 

Fortunately, the timing of the changes is not as important as is the fact tliat 
each change should be made, in.sofar as possible, in accordance with the plan for the 
ultimate transit system. Transit routes should not be continually shifted from 
street to street. Street improvement programs are difficult to plan under such 
shifting and the constant changes do not encourage stabilized residential areas. 
Also there will be many objections from propertv owners even though the line mav 
have been established for onlv a few vears. 

I'late Number 5 shows the suggested routings for an intermediate transit 
system for \ ancouver that is a fundamental step toward the improvement and 
develoiMuent of the ultimate .system which is shown on Plate Number 6. This plan 
not (inly indicates the location and general extent of the various routes but also sug- 
gests the type of service which could logicallv be provided on each line. It should 
be reiterated, however, that the Town Plan is more concerned with the location and 
extent of the service than it is with the tvpe of service. Improved equipment ur 
other changing conditions may make it desirable to provide different tvpes of oper- 
ating ecjuipment than is suggested on the plan, but there should be manv substantial 
rea.sons before a change should be permitted in the location of the routes. Plate 
Number 3 also shows the i()4i distribution of population and indicates the extent 
to which the population would be conveniently ser\ed. 

There is no exact time limit within which all the details of this plan should he 
ciimpleted. Many of the present routes remain unchanged and some of the pro- 
posed new routes can be established as soon as new equipment can be secured. In 
other in.stances, street openings and street pavements are necessarv before the routes 
can l)e operated. The plan should serve as a general guide for the transit changes 
during the next five or ten years. 

While some changes and minor readjustments will be necessarv between the 
routings under this plan and those proposed for the ultimate system, the interme- 
diate routings are very closely co-ordinated with the latter. Special care has been 
taken to establish transit routes upon streets that should ultimately accommodate 
such facilities. Another objective of the intermediate plan has been to provide more 
direct service between the residential areas and the business district and thus elimi- 
nate much transferring and delays. However, there are certain sections of the citv, 
such as the southeastern and eastern portions, where the population is so scattered 
and thinly spread that feeder busses are about the onl}- tyjie of service that can be 


justified for many years. In oeneral, the intermediate i)Ian ])n)vides convenient 
and direct service for a nnicli larger population than the present system. 
A brief discussion of each route follows: 


A. \'anc(iuvcr-Marpole-l-ulu Island Route. This is the same as the pre.sent 
Marpole Jnterurban line. No changes are proposed although it is unfortunate that 
it does not extend further into the downtown business district. The operation of 
both freight and transit service over this r(.iute presents many operating problems, 
but efiforts should be made in the future to provide the transit service by street cars 
so that the vehicles could extend through to the business district and possibly con- 
nect with the Central I'ark Interurban line serving the southeastern part of the city. 

It is possible that increased freight operation may soon seriously interfere with 
interurban service between the Marpole interurban district and New Westminster. 
It would be entirely satisfactory to substitute motor bus service for this ])ortion of 
the line, such bus line to be located upon Marine Drive. 

B. This line is the same as the present Central I'ark Interurban line. As 
mentioned above, it would be desirable if the service could be provided by street 
cars and thus operate to and through the downto\\'n business district. Such oj^er- 
ation would also eliminate the need for route Number 4 which involves street car 
service upon the line as far as Cedar Cottage. 


1, AND [A. This route is the same as the present lines now found on Plastings 
Street, West P> roadway and Dunbar Street and no changes are proposed thereon. 
In the western part of the city it would be ojx'rated as a split route with one portion 
extending west of Tenth Avenue and then to P'ourth Avenue and terminating at 
Blanca Street while the other portion extends south on Dunbar Street. This will 
probably l)e one of the last street car lines to be abandoned. 

2, 2A, .\xi) 2B. In the eastern ])ortion of the city the routes Numbers 2 and 2A 
are the same as the present Kingsway-\'ictoria Drive routes. The proposed route 
2 11 is also the same as the present Broadway East line. All these would join on 
Kingsway and operate as at present to the downtown business district. S(Mnc of 
these cars should continue through the central business district and extend westward 
along the existing- street car line on Fourth Avenue. This will jjrovide a through 
route, although less service will be needed along tlie Fourth Avenue line and a 
luimber of cars will have to be looped in the central business district. Street car 
operation will ])robably be desirable on these routes during the period covered by 
this ])lan. 

3, AND 3A. In the eastern portion of the cit\' these routes are also the same as 
the present Eraser Street and the present .Main Street lines exce])t that the present 
shuttle service on the extreme southern part of Main Street will eventually be 
replaced by a bus route. It is also recommended that these routes extend thrraigh 
the business district and connect with the present street car line on Pender Street 
that extends to Stanlev I'ark. 


4- This is the same as the present Grandview Hue. As previoush- indicated it 
would be desirable for this rotite to be supplanted by street car operation upon the 
entire Central Park Interurlian line. Until such type of operation is established the 
street cars on this line can loop in the central business district. 


5. This is the same as the present Powell Street line. Operation is proposed, 
however, to be provided by trolley coach rather than by street cars. After the 
trolley coach route is established, the line should eventually be extended a short 
distance eastward to provide service for residences located northeast of the 
Exhibition Grounds. 

6. AND 6A. These t\\o trolley coach lines will replace the present Oak and 
Cambie Street lines. However, the new line on both streets should not extend as 
far south as the present street car line because of the extensive vacant areas. The 
line on Cambie Street should be extended southward as residential development 
occurs in this area but it undoubtedly will be many years before an extension on 
Oak Street beyond the Shaughnessy Heights Golf Course can be justified. 

7. This proposed trolley coach operation would replace the Granville Street 
street car and the feeder bus which extends southward to the end of the line. It is 
not recommended, however, that trolley coach operation be established on this line 
until the new Granville Street r)ridg-e is constructed. The need for this type of 
ser\ice on Granville Street is an important factor that should influence the early 
improvement of this bridge. 

Granville Street is one of the most logical locations for a trolley coach route. 
The elimination of the street car tracks would greatly improve vehicular movement 
and would materially reduce hazards to the transit riders by permitting curb loading. 
The proposed type of operation would also permit the route to be extended south- 
ward so that direct service to the downtown area could be made available to a 
rapidly developing residential district. 

8. This route will serve the heavily populated area west of the central business 
district. The location of the route is the same as the present Davie-Robson street 
car line. \\'hile this route may eventually be connected w-ith some of the other 
trolley coach lines, it will probably have to loop in the central business district for 
a number of years. 


<>. This route is, in general, a combination of the i)resent ]\Lackenzie- 
Macdonald bus line and the Kitsilano car line. Some connections and extensions 
are necessary to make this a direct route to the downtown business district. The 
prDvision of this direct service for the well developed residential section south of 
I Broadway is a \ery important improvement in the intermediate transit system. 

The line is shown on the accompanying ])lan as a motor bus route and there 
are several important reasons why this type of operation should eventually be made 
available on the major portion of this route. However, this is also a logical 
location for one of the first trolley coach operations and it is realized that such 
operation should not be established on the present Granville Street bridge. It is, 


therefore, recommended that this line be first operated as a trolley coach line to 
extend over the Burrard Street bridge and then on to Howe Street in the downtown 
area. However, this operation should be permitted only until the new Granville 
Street bridge is completed. Thereafter, the trolle}' lines would be removed from 
the Burrard Street bridge and all future trolley coach operation would be over the 
Granville Street bridge. It is further recommended that ultimately only motor bus 
operation should be permitted over the Burrard Street bridge. 

After the trolley coach operation has been shifted from the Burrard Street to 
the Granville Street bridge, trolley coaches could still be operated on the southern 
half of this route by extending the route out Granville Street to Sixteenth Avenue 
and then over Sixteenth Avenue to Macdonald and Mackenzie Streets. The addi- 
tional service provided by such a route would be desirable. 

10. AND loA. This is a new motor bus route and will provide direct service 
from the downtown area to the central eastern part of the city. From the downtown 
business district it would extend over the Georgia Street Viaduct to Main Street 
and then along Terminal and First Avenues. It will replace the present Burnab\- 
Lake Interurban line. New street openings and paving will be necessary before the 
line can be extended beyond Nanaimo Street. However, such improvements are 
also necessary for vehicular traffic. 

It will be noted that, in addition to extending the route eastwardly. it can also 
extend north and south along Rupert Street and thus provide direct service for 
this outlying portion of the city. However, the areas along the southern portion of 
Rupert Street are so thinly populated that it will be several years before any service 
other than feeder bus can be justified therein. 

11. This is a feeder bus line that is similar to the present line serving the 
University area. The loop and route near the University should be extended as 
new development occurs. 

12. This is also a feeder bus line and the route is quite similar to the present 
service to the Spanish Banks area. It should be relocated upon the new major street 
alignment when this improvement is completed. The major service on this line is 
required during the summer months when persons desire to reach the park and 
recreational areas along the south side of English Bay. 

13. This feeder bus line will provide some cross-town service and will also 
replace the present street car shuttle service on the extreme southern portion of 
Main Street. The installation of this line on Main Street should probably be delayed 
until additional paving is provided. Until new paving is provided which will permit 
the proposed bus service on Knight Street to be extended south of 41st Avenue, 
it will be possible to give some transit service in this general area by extending this 
proposed bus route to about Gordon Park or possibly to Victoria Drive. 

14. This is a short feeder line operated between the proposed Granville Street 
trollev coach route and the southern end of the proposed Cambie Street route. 
It thus affords riders the choice of two routes in reaching the business district. 
Its location on Oak Street will replace the present street car service and its loca- 
tion on 49th Avenue and Cambie Street will provide service in an area that is now 
entirely unserved. 

15. This is a new bus route that should supplant a portion of the present 


street c;u" line on Broadwav. Tliis entire area is or will he within a reasonahle 
walking distance of routes extending directly to the Inisiness district and there is 
no necessity of having a transit route on this street that travels in a loop to reach 
the central shopping centre. However, crosstown ser\icc should he estahlished on 
Broadwav and this line extending between Granville Street and Kingsway will be 
the first portion of the crosstown route. 

Some consideration has been given to the establishment of a crosstown route 
on Twelfth Avenue. This is not a desirable location for a transit line. There has 
alwavs been a transit route on Broadway and transit service .should be continued on 
this .street especially because of its desirable location. Twelfth Avenue is entirely 
too close to Broadway for an additional transit line and would provide unneces- 
sary duplication. 

]('). This is another feeder line, a portion of w'hich is similar to the present 
feeder route on Knight Street. It should be operated as a motor bus line, but 
instead of terminating at Kingsway it should be extended north and east so as to 
intersect w ith the Central Park Interurban and the Grandview street car line. As 
previously discussed, it should also be extended south of 41st .\venue to about 57th 
Avenue whenever street improvement permits. 

17. This is also a feeder bus line that will supplant the present shuttle street 
car service on East Broadwav and XanaiuKi Street. Tt should, however, be extended 
north of Hastings Street to intersect the I'owell Street line which w-ill give improved 
service to the waterfront and harbour area. 

18. A cross-town route in the more outl}-ing portions soon will be needed in 
\ ancouver. It is recommended that the major portion of this route be located on 
41st Avenue. It should extend from Dunbar Street on the west, eastward to Victoria 
l^rive and then by certain existing streets should be extended to Renfrew Street 
and then northward to the Powell Street line near the Exhibition Grounds. Major 
street imjjrovements will eventually afford an improved location for this route 
between Renfrew Street and 41st Avenue, but in the meantime minor streets can be 
utilized. This route should provide excellent service in permitting persons to travel 
from one section to another without being forced to go long distances before they 
can make a transfer to a line serving their destination. It should also be especially 
helpful in carrying persons between their homes and places of employment. 

The first portion of the 41st Avenue crosstown route could be immediately 
established between Dunbar Street and the Marpole Interurban as a shuttle bus 
line. This would permit the single-track street car line to be abandoned west of 
the interurban line. Because of the inadecjuate street improvement along 41st 
-Xvenue and the sparsely settled areas adjoining this route, the additional portions 
may not be needed for several years. In the meantime it will undoubtedly be 
desirable to establish a crosstown line on King Edward .Kvenue, between .\rbutus 
Street and Kingsway. Any permission to establish .such a route on King Edward 
,\ venue should be granted, however, with the imderstanding it would be trans- 
ferred to 41st Avenue just as soon as street improvements ])ermit and urban 
developments warrant. Eurthcrmore, it should be understood that a crosstown 
route would not thereafter be continued on King Edward Avenue. The crosstown 
routes on P.roadway and 4rst .Avenue would he entirely adequate to serve the future 



The proposed transit svsteni which can ultimately serve the City of \ancouver 
is shown on I'late Number 6. This is a lony range plan and must be developed 
gradually during the next twenty-five years. It has been carefully co-ordinated 
with the intermediate plan discussed in the preceding section and the ultimate plan 
is primarily an extension of the routing that should be developed in the interme- 
diate stages. 

The plan also shows the desirable distribution of the future population. Any 
area that is more than one-quarter of a mile from a future transit route is shown 
!)}• a hatched indication. There is only a small amount of unserved area and prac- 
tically all of the future population will be within reasonable walking distance of a 
transit line. 

No recommendations are made regarding the type of service that should be 
provided i>n these routes. It is impossible to forecast at this time just what type 
of operation would proAC most desirable in the next fifteen or twenty-five years. 
The location of the routes rather than tl e operating details is the important factor. 
It is expected that street car operation \\ ill continue for many years on the more 
hea\il\- travelled routes but there is little or no possibility of building new tracks to 
provide street car service in outlying sections. Trolley coaches, motor busses or 
similar operating facilities will undoubtedly provide transit service for the new and 
extended routes. 

The major differentiations between the routes shown on the plan are ( i ) the 
indication of routes that extend directly from the residential sections to the business 
district; (2) the locations of express bus routes on the proposed Express Highway, 
and (3) feeder and crosstown busses. One of the main objectives of the ultimate 
system is the provision of direct service from the residential areas to the downtown 
shopping centre in all sections of the citw This is one of the greatest conveniences 
that can be provided for the riding public and should encourage much additional 
riding on the transit system. 

The proposals of the plan are generally self-explanatory and no detailed 
explanations of each route is necessary. The following is a brief discussion of the 
major differences between the ultimate and the intermediate system. 

1. It is recommended that much of the transit service in the northwestern 
part of the city be provided by motor bus and that these enter the business district 
over the Burrard Street bridge. This will also permit the convenient extension of 
these lines into the University Lands so as to provide direct service between this 
potential residential de\elopment and the downtown district. 

2. A number of routes will enter the central business district via the new 
Granville Street bridge. This is one of the most logical approaches to the central 
area. However, the Cambie Street bridge should also be utilized for transit routes. 

In connection with the transit service in the area immediately south of the 
business district reference should be made to the fact that increased freight nper- 
















Plate Number 6 

ation may ultimately force the cessation of interurban or street car service on tlie 
Marpole Interurban line. If such service is abandoned, equally convenient service 
can be pro^•ided by establishing a motor bus route on Arbutus Street and extending 
this over the proposed connection to lUn^rard Street bridge and then over this bridge 
to the central business district. 

3. One of the most imp()rtant features of the ultimate plan is the provision 
for express busses on the Express Highway from Georgia Street in the business 
district south-easterly through the city and on to Xew Westminster. These busses 
could operate on the Express Highway up to such streets as Nanaimo, Rupert and 
Boundary, and then leave the Express Highway and travel over these major 
thoroughfares to unload and to pick up passengers. Thus, local service would be 
combined with express service and tlic riders would lie able to rt-ach the central 
area (juickly and conveniently. 

Much study is being given in other cities to the possibility of using these 
express routes for local transit and the City of \'ancouver should take full 
advantage of this outstanding possibility. About the only cliange that would be 
needed in express highway development would be the provision of an extra lane 
at the major street intersections which would certainly involve a minimum expendi- 
ture. There is no other opportunity for providing such excellent service for so 
little additional cost. 

\\'hile the Central Park interurban line is shown on the ultimate transit system, 
this would probably be abandoned after the express bus service has been put into 
full operation. The Central Park line is t(5o close to the future Express Highway 
to warrant this duplicate service. The Central Park line can, however, furnisli 
valuable service during the period within which the Express Highway is being 


Reference has been made to tlie present trend in large cities to provide for 
rapid transit service. Several cities in both Canada and United States, including 
Toronto, Detroit, Cleveland and Washington, which do not now have rapid transit 
.systems, are preparing comprehensive plans for the improvement of such facilities. 
Although \'ancouver could not now justify the expenditure for a rapid transit 
system, it is recommended that the matter be constantly considered by the transit 
company and by local officials and citizens so that the city may be able to provide 
such service if it becomes absolutely imperative. The following comments indicate 
some of the possibilities for a rapid transit service. 

The proposed service along the Express Highway serving the southeastern 
portion of the city A\ould constitute transit service that can and should be made 
available. This will provide convenient rapid service for a substantial portion of 
the city area. The service could be even further increased by extending the pro- 
posed feeder and local service routes in the eastern portion of the city. 

Another possibility for rapid transit is the improvement of the present Marpole 
line. This would involve substantial track changes, such as the provision of 
additional tracks for the transit service and the lowering of these tracks so as to 
eliminate grade crossings with major streets. As previously indicated, the rail- 


road operation on this route presents many difficulties, but the potentiaHties of the 
private right-of-way should not be overlooked. Feeder busses could be provided 
to carry passengers from the residential districts to this route. 

To provide complete rapid transit service for the Marpole line, it would be 
essential to construct a subway under Granville Street, probably with a terminus 
and loop near the present Canadian Pacific Raihvay station. This would be a costly 
project, but it would bring a large number of persons to the centre of the down- 
town district with a minimum of interference and delays. 

The above routings are mentioned merely to show the future possibilities. They 
certainly could not be economically justified in the near future under the present 
trends of development. 



As indicated in connection with Plate Number 4. the present routes within 
the central business district are generally satisfactory. The advantages now 
obtained from this routing should continue in the future, namely, (a) the routes 
should be as near the centre of the area as possible, and (b) they should extend 
through the district or at least to the centre of the district (approximately to Pender 
and Granville Streets). This would insure that passengers can conveniently reach 
the older jwrtion of the district which will assist in checking any trends of decen- 
tralizatii)n. Another objective of transit routings in the central area is that both 
the 15urrard and Cambie distributor streets can be kept free of public transit routes 
and made available for vehicular movement. 

The establishment of through routes in the central business district will recjuire 
from time to time, certain adjustments between the two ends of the routes that form 
the through line. One of the practical reciuirements of through routing is that the 
volume of traffic and riding habits be similar on each end of the line. Since these 
factors change as new development occurs and the lines are extended, adjustments 
are frequently necessary. It is especially difficult to determine what the riding 
characteristics will be of new lines, such as the proposed trolley coaches, and new 
routes are frequently looped in the Inisiness district when first established. Thus no 
detailed recommendations are made in this report as to the exact routings and 
connections for all lines in the business centre. Recommendations are made, how- 
ever, regarding the streets that should be used and the main jirinciples that should 
be followed. 

In the gradual development of the transit system it will undoubtedly prove 
essential that certain streets be used temporarily for transit facilities but which 
eventually can be freed of such transit operation. This would be particularly neces- 
sarv because of probable use of both street car and trolley coach operation. \"an- 
couver's downtown streets are comparatively narrow and there would be many 
disadvantages if both a centre loading and a curb loading vehicle operated on the 
same street. Even the loading of one on the near side and the other on the far side 
of the intersection would still result in restricted movement of automobiles because 
of narrow pavements. Thus, for example, while Richards Street should eventually 
be utilized for the routing of trolley coaches, the street car operations may con- 
tinue for manv years and in order to avoid excessive congestion on both Granville 
and Richards Streets, the first trolley coach routes should operate on Seymour Street, 
but eventuallv can be located on Richards Street. Of course. Phiwe Street — and 
eventually also Hornby Street — will be the trolley coach routes im streets west of 
Granville Street. 

In general, the following objectives should be adhered to in the transit routing 
in the central business district under both the Intermediate and Ultimate Plans. 

I. Granville and Hastings Streets should carry as many street car lines as 
will not undulv congest these important business streets. Street cars invarialily 


c;irr\- the largest number of riders and they should be brought to the centre of 
the district. l'\u-therniore, these streets have long been used for this purpose and 
should continue as long as street cars operate in the city. 

2. Richards Street should continue to have street car operation to avoid con- 
gestion on Granville Street, but eventually, it should be used almost completely for 
trolley coach routings. If trolley coaches should entirely supplant the street car 
operation they should be located on Granville Street as well as upon tlie other 
recommended streets. 

3. The trolley coaches that first enter over the Burrard Street Bridge should 
utilize Burrard Street only as far as Davie Street and then should travel northward 
to and into the business district on Howe Street. These coaches might be connected 
with those on the Powell Street line but if they are looped they should travel on 
Howe to Dunsmuir to Seymour Streets and then on .Seymour Street to some street 
south of Georgia Street which they can use to reach Howe Street. \\'henever street 
car operation is abandoned on Pender Street, any such loop should use Pender 
rather than Dunsmuir Street, to reach Seymour Street, in order that the coaches 
may be as near as possible to the centre of tiie district. The trolley coach line on 
Davie and Robson Streets should follow the same general routing. 

Whenever the trolley coach operation over Burrard Street bridge is supplanted 
by motor bus route, the busses should follow the above routing in the business district. 
Eventually as the business district extends westward, the location of the route 
might be shifted from Howe Street to Hornln- Street so as to leave a street exclus- 
ively for vehicular movement paralleling Granville Street. 

4. The proposed bus line that is to enter the business district over the Georgia 
Street \ iaduct should follow the same general routing as proposed in Number 3 
for the trolley coaches. Even if these busses were connected with busses entering 
over the Burrard Street bridge they should tra^■el northward at least as far as 
Dunsmuir Street in order to provide service near the centre of the shopping district. 

5. The routes in the central business district under the ultimate transit system 
will be generall} similar to those discussed above. The same streets and principle 
should be utilized. The only major ditterences will be the express busses which 
enter the centre over the new Express Highway. These busses operate westward on 
Georgia Street to either Howe or Hornby Streets and then northward to Dunsmuir 
or Pender Streets and then extend southward to the Express Plighway via Seymour 
Street. By the time these busses are in operation, it is quite probable that all trolkn 
coach routes will have been removed frnm Seymour Street to Richards Street and 
no undue congestion will result. 



It has been indicated that the proposed transit routings are to be gradually 
carried out during the next 20 to 25 years. The relocations and extensions must 
be related to new population growth and to other physical improvements proposed 
in the Town Plan. Many new streets must be opened and improved before some 
of the proposed routings can be established. 


The character of the street improvement, as well as its location, has a major 
effect upon the officiencr\' of the transit system. The pavement must be wide and 
durable. A curb and a marked line in the centre of the street is especially important 
for bus and trolley car routes in X'ancouver, because of the fog during the winter 
months. While the ultimate efficiency of the transit system will partlv depend upon 
good street improvements, such improvements are also essential for the large num- 
ber of automobiles and trucks. The major street improvements that serve both 
transit facilities and private automobiles should be among the first to be initiated. 
Another factor that will improve both transit and vehicular movement is the plac- 
ing of stop signs where minor streets intersect the major route so that the heavier 
volume of traftlc can move freely with a niininuim amount of conflict with the cross 


Adequate space for loading and unloading passengers using the motor bus 
and trolley coach must be provided along the curb at the regular stops. Along- 
some of the transit routes in the residential portions of \'ancouver there are inade- 
<iuate pavement and sidewalks. The bus either stops on the narrow pavement, or 
tlie passengers step into a ditch. This is both dangerous and inconvenient to the 
transit riders, as well as to the drivers of vehicles who are forced to wait because 
of the narrow pavement. The widening and improving of the major streets 
accommodating transit lines are essential to correct this condition. 

In the downtown district adequate space must be reserved for the loading and 
unloading of passengers at the corners. The few parking places that will be lost 
by providing spacious zones will be more than compensated for by the convenience 
to the large number of transit riders. AKso, if busses can pull close to the curb 
there will be less interference with the movement of private automobiles and trucks. 
Special effort must be made to keep such spaces free of any vehicular parking. As 
the number of transit vehicles increase it will be desirable and essential to com- 
pletely pn:)hil)it parking along the bus routes during the morning and evening rush 
hours. This will expedite the movement of both transit and private vehicles. 



One of the greatest delays tv transit niuvenient is encountered in the down- 
town lousiness district. Here there is more vehicular congestion, and a large 
nunilier of passengers load and unload at each intersection. Every effort must be 
made to facilitate this loading and unloading. Expedition has frequently proved 
possible by having an assistant fare collector stationed at the more important inter- 
sections so that riders can load both at the front and at the rear of the vehicle. 


Since the passengers desire to travel as quickly as possible to their destinations 
after once boarding a vehicle, an excessive number of stops must be avoided. The 
skip-stop system that was installed during the war thoroughly indicated the advan- 
tages of this treatment. It sliould be continued, especially where the intersections 
are close together. Walking a short distance should be preferable to a longer riding- 
time between the home and destination. 

It is particularly important that the most efficient and modern type of vehicle 
be pro\-ided in tlie post-war period. Passengers will desire both speed and comfort. 
.Much coinpetitinn can again he expected from automobiles in the post-war period, 
and operating companies must be able to provide good equipment and sound routes. 
There is no (juestion about the economy of using transit facilities, and it is largely 
a question of convenience and comfort. While the Town Plan is not concerned 
with the matter of fares or operating details it must be reiterated that a good 
transit system is so important to the development and growth of the city that fare 
adjustments and operating economies are preferable to an obsolete and inadequate